17 June 2004 Edition
Honouring Derry's republican dead
The Derry Republican Graves Association is organising its annual sponsored walk on Saturday 26 June. The walk, which in the past took place in the Bogside and "up the line", this year is leaving from Seán Dolan's GAA Club in the Creggan to An Gráinne Fort in Donegal - where transport will then bring people back to the GAA for light refreshments and a well earned rest.
Martin McGuinness, who has taken part in the walk in the past, said: "The walk in itself is a challenge but quite refreshing. I have participated in it a number of years and when anyone who visits the Republican Plot in the cemetery and other republican graves throughout the cemetery and sees the magnificent work in the upkeep of the plot and the graves, they will recognise the high standard of work carried out and maintained annually. I would encourage people to get a sponsor form, take part in the walk, and help the Derry Republican Graves to maintain such high standards that properly reflect the esteem in which republican dead and their families are held throughout Derry."
The organisers of the event say that the walk is one of a number of events taking place in Derry over the weekend of Friday 25 June until Sunday 27 June, leading up to the annual Derry Volunteers Commemoration, which takes place on the last Sunday in June each year. A spokesperson said: "The work that we have carried out to date is well documented. We also maintain the plot all year round. Lately, we have completed the refurbishment of republican graves outside of the plot and obviously, the work has been expensive. So we have organised a number of events to help raise funds to pay for this work. On Friday night, a Night At the Races has been organised at Seán Dolan's GAA club, the sponsored walk will take place on Saturday afternoon, leaving the GAA club car park at 12.30 pm. On Saturday night, the hugely popular Glasgow Irish Folk band Shebeen will be playing in the Gweedore Bar upstairs, and of course the commemoration will leave Creggan Shops at 2.30 pm on Sunday 27 June. As always, we call on everyone to participate in these events.